Akshaara Lalwani has always thought that there’s no better way to be in the charge of your destiny than by becoming an entrepreneur, because “you are able to make as high, as rapidly, as broad or even as gradually as you want”.
As a child, she was fiercely competitive, along with moving forward, “taking charge of her destiny” meant primarily adopting the traditional path to evaluate the waters and next plunging headlong directly into entrepreneurship.
After majoring in Economics from Jai Hind College, Mumbai, Akshaara grew to become a financial advisor and investment banker. On introspection, she felt she didn’t want to restrict her career to just one industry. A family friend recommended that since she’d a knack for communicating effectively, she should take a look at public relations. At 23, she began a boutique PR firm. And hence, Communicate India was born.
She started the firm by the makeshift office in a bedroom and Rs 10,000, of which half the total amount was gift vouchers for a printer, offered to her by her friends.
Initially, Akshaara faced a little hesitation from clients that weren’t far too excited to believe in a 23-year-old with their mandate, wondering in case she’d the experience and vision, even when she possessed the desire and enthusiasm.
My first client was, a restaurant in Bandra that believed in my enthusiasm and passion and signed a six-month agreement. “Bootstrapping was, in fact, a blessing in disguise. It taught me frugality, and how you can be inventive and distinguish myself from the clutter. Fortunately, I was in a service industry and did not need a lot of capital to get up and running, unlike a product-based service. Like Elon Musk stated,’ I was hell-bent on turning it into work’,” she recalls.
She also faced various challenges; there were many people who did not wish to join a startup, and also it was difficult to make senior staff members think in her vision.
8 many years into the journey, Akshaara states Communicate India is a strategic full-service firm that partners with clients to work alongside to achieve their communications and marketing goals.
When I got a deep understanding of the company and myself that is when I thought my business started growing. “Establishing the right expectations with customers and not simply agreeing with them had short-term ramifications but helped the company scale up long term and retain clients over the years. When you have a good team it can help free up the time to completely focus more on the overarching objectives and strategy than daily activities,” she says.
It’s a diverse team working throughout sectors, company, infrastructure, tourism and travel, healthcare, solar power, cement, real-estate, beverage, and food, as well as others. From probably the smallest companies to Fortune 500 companies we assist brands irrespective of size, industry, or geographies, she adds.
“In the middle of the journey, Akshaara suffered a major setback when her office at Mehdi Cottage caught fire plus was charred. It was a significant blow for us but additionally our biggest turning point. We chose to update from a small creative boutique and scale it up to a corporate and strategic entity of what we’re now. It was truly high stakes as we place in every bit of our savings and invested in the business”, she states.
Conquering her fear is what makes this entrepreneur forge ahead in the previous 8 years. A good deal of our employees went to our competitors and have come back again to us since they enjoyed the culture here and that can make me excited in the truest sense that we must be doing some things right for former personnel to come back again to us, year after year.
Communicate India also offers a 90:10 female-to-male ratio, as Akshaara thinks in “empowering females on merit, wherever you can. I believe females bring a great deal of stability, broader perspective, and multi-tasking capabilities to the table”. At present, the company is looking at creating offices in 2 emerging markets and features a presence through its alliances in the US, India, Southeast Asia, Australia, the UK, and Europe. Akshaara is hoping for a 100 percent market share as “an ideal company is 100% net profit and 100% market share”.
Akshaara says it is fascinating to be a female entrepreneur in India. “India is evolving massively. There is an equal opportunity, competition, and increasing respect for women entrepreneurs. There is no glass ceiling. I believe in getting the job done, regardless of whether someone is male or female,” she clues off.